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Readers respond to Prashad Gaza column: Rabbi Justin David, Avoiding either/or on the Gaza crisis

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — There are certain incontrovertible realities about the conflict between Israel and Hamas taking place in Gaza, none of which lead to easy conclusions. Hamas is firing rockets indiscriminately at civilian targets in Israel, for which Israel not only has the right but the obligation to respond in order to protect its … 0

Jackie Wolf: Happy Birthday, Medicare — the best form of health insurance

Thursday, July 31, 2014

AMHERST — There is a joke that goes: What’s so good about turning 65? Answer: Insurance agents stop calling. I would like to suggest a variation on that joke: What’s so good about turning 65? For almost all people in the United States, the good news is they are eligible for Medicare. The good news is they no longer, each year, have to … 0

Pat Schneider: Moved by Bill Newman’s homefront account of Vietnam era

Thursday, June 26, 2014

AMHERST — Today I am reading Bill Newman’s book, “When the War Came Home.” It is a portrait of a generation, written not in reflection long after events, but in immediate responses as journalist, memoirist, commentary, poet. Newman … 0

Don Robinson: A fossil fuel emancipation? Comparing numbers, and strategies, with end of slavery in US

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

ASHFIELD — To understand the challenge of climate change, Christopher Hayes argues that we can compare it to ending slavery in the middle of the 19th century. As Hayes recognizes, in a brilliant May 12 essay in The Nation, historical analogies are never perfect. There is no moral … 2

Christopher L. Doyle: WWI, A war too easy to forget

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Commenting recently about seeing the play “War Horse,” one of my 11th-grade students expressed surprise that “even some of the Nazis had humane feelings” for the plight of animals caught up in war. “It’s about the First World … 0

Marty Nathan: Getting the message that climate change crisis is real

Monday, June 23, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — The World Meteorological Society announced that in April, for the first time in human history, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels surpassed 400 parts per million throughout the northern Hemisphere. This is an increase of 40 percent since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. Prior to that the … 13

Marietta Pritchard: Steve Strimer’s love affair with print continues with Levellers Press

Friday, June 20, 2014

AMHERST — Steve Strimer may not literally have printer’s ink in his veins, but he comes about as close as you can get. I first knew him as a lively, funny, somewhat subversive presence at the Gazette in the late ’70s. I was a new editorial recruit, and … 0

Doyle McManus: ISIS — is it too extreme to survive?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Just how terrifying is the Sunni Muslim extremist group that’s taken over a huge swath of territory in northern Iraq? Here are some clues: After seizing Iraq’s second-largest city, the group, known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, boasted of massacring 1,700 prisoners in … 0

Greg Rolland: Keep FBI’s hands off our school employees’ fingerprints

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

EASTHAMPTON — Ordinary, non-criminal citizens should not, as a general rule, be subject to FBI fingerprinting. However, the kindergarten teachers of my twin daughters, both devoted and caring women, should? So says the recent Massachusetts law that will … 2

Adam Fisher: The VA’s standing around army of patients

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — There are at least two things that I can imagine might keep doctors from signing on to work at Department of Veterans Affairs medical facilities. One is income. Nationwide, there is a great deal of hand-wringing … 0

Lynne Bertrand: When fish, and imaginations, take flight: Or, we’ll miss you, Ryuzaki, Peter Matthiessen and Gabriel Garcia Márquez

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

WILLIAMSBURG Everyone else has moved on, but I am still mourning the death of a fish who lived for a season in a bowl in our kitchen. His name was Ryuzaki, after the renowned detective of Japanese manga. … 0

Julio Capó Jr.: Money, not morals, drives response to bias in professional sports

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

AMHERST Donald Sterling refuses to go without a fight. The NBA shunned the LA Clippers owner after a racist conversation he had with his girlfriend surfaced on the net. The NBA’s lead counsel now believes the franchise and … 0